The self-assessment of clinical competence and the need for further training: A cross-sectional survey of advanced practice nursing students
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionJournal of Clinical Nursing. 2019, 29 545-555. 10.1111/jocn.15095
Aims and objectives: (a) To describe and analyse advanced practice nursing students' self-assessment of their clinical competence and need for further training and (b) to analyse the possible predictive variables in their self-assessment.Background: The self-assessment of clinical competence in nursing education is im-portant for identifying professional development and educational needs to improve patient care.Design: A cross-sectional survey following STROBE guidelines was used.Methods: Ninety-nine students from three universities/university colleges in Norway participated in the study, and data were collected using a revised version of the Professional Nurse Self-Assessment Scale II. Descriptive, correlation and regres-sion analyses were performed.Results: The students gave the highest self-assessment ratings for their clinical compe-tence in taking full responsibility and for their need for further training in medication effects and interactions. Although the students gave themselves low ratings for the use of electronic devices, they assessed their need for further training in this area as average. Clinical work experience as a registered nurse and previous higher education level were not significant predictors of clinical competence nor the need for further training.Conclusion: The findings indicate that self-assessment is appropriate for students in advanced practice nursing programmes. This study implies that programmes in ad-vanced practice nursing need to familiarise students with the possibilities of informa-tion technology. It questions the entry requirement that stipulates that prospective students must have several years of clinical work experience as registered nurses before entering advanced practice nursing programmes. These programmes need to communicate that competencies other than direct clinical practice are also needed for students' future roles. Relevance to clinical practice: The study contributes to the exploration of how students self-assess own clinical competence and need for further training in advanced practice nursing programmes. Further research should evaluate the development of clinical competence.